Liverpool FC have emerged as the latest contender to sign Southampton’s in-demand full-back Luke Shaw – with Chelsea and Manchester United also keen.

Reports suggest that the Anfield side is targeting wanted Southampton young star Shaw, as Brendan Rodgers plans for a Champions League campaign next term.

The Liverpool boss would have to fight off serious competition as both Chelsea and Manchester United have been linked with the the talented 18-year-old defender, who won England honours for the first time earlier this month, for a while now. Both the clubs have been leading the race to sign the Southampton defender since the January transfer window. United reportedly even had a bid turned down by the Saints. Recent reports also suggest that with French veteran Patrice Evra linked with an exit, David Moyes is frantically looking  for a defender, and after missing out of Baines, he has made Shaw his number one target and is ready to bid £26m bid for him.

Liverpool need to strengthen in the defence department for next season as the Reds are clearly struggling in that department. The full backs especially, need to be looked at. Jose Enrique has suffered from injury almost throughout the season. Valencia on-loan full back Aly Cissokho has not lived up to expectations. Glen Johnson is slowly returning to form, but his future remains uncertain and Real Madrid have recently shown interest in the player. Therefore, Brendan Rodgers clearly needs to add to this department in the summer and has been targeting top full backs, with reports also linking the Reds to Bacary Sagna, Ashley Cole, Jan Vertonghen (also plays as left back) and Marcos Rojo. Luke Shaw is the latest name linked to the Reds and has good reason for it.

Since his debut against West Brom at the Hawthorns last season under Nigel Adkins, Shaw has gone on to become one of Southampton’s most consistent players. This season, he has played 28 games for the Saints and has established himself a player who can put in solid performances for every game. The defender posesses considerable attacking flair as well and links up well with the attackers. He has two assists in the league to his name.

The teenage full-back is going to cost any potential suitor something in the region of £30m, his valuation by Southampton.

THT Verdict: Unlikely

This transfer looks very unlikely. His high valuation will probably not be met by Liverpool. While the player is an absolute phenomenon, and in the long run, probably a bargain for thirty million; the Anfield side has more areas which need further improvement and paying that kind of money for something which could be ably addressed for half that money doesn’t look wise on Liverpool’s part. Brendan Rodgers cannot expect to negotiate and get his valuation lowered in this case because of the amount of suitors the player has. The club which gets Shaw in the summer would be paying something in that region. Another reason for a possible failure of this target would be the desire of the other players wanting Shaw more. If reports are to be believed, David Moyes has made it his mission to get the player to get the 18 year old to Old Trafford next season. Chelsea have also shown heavy interest in the player. Besides, Liverpool have had their own academy player Jon Flanagan step up when asked to fill in. The defender has been a revelation for the Reds and hence missing out on Shaw won’t hurt the Merseyside outfit much.